This is the second installment of a two part series on setting primary contact field in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. You may want to read the first installment before continuing on.


Another option to resolve this issue importing accounts and contacts is a new feature in CRM 2011. The Data Import has the ability to import Accounts and Contacts at the same time. We will walk through the steps of how to accomplish this task in CRM2011.

Step1: Create two .CSV files, one for your Accounts and one for your Contacts.

If possible have a unique id for each record in your spreadsheet. This will allow you to use this value to build the relationship between the Accounts and Contacts. The reason behind this is if you have any duplicate contacts or accounts within your spreadsheet the import will fail on these records.

You may also choose to download a template from the Data import. This will help you with mapping process.

Accounts Example:

Contact Example:

Step 2: Once you are ready to give your files a try, add them to a zip file.

Step 3: In CRM 2011, start the Data Import and browse to your zip file that you created above. Select Next and Next after you have reviewed the settings.

Step 4: Select the Default (Automatic Mapping) from the System Data Maps

Step 5: Now we get to select what entities we are going to import into. Select the Account and Contact entities from the drop downs.

Step 6: You now get the ability to map your fields. Start with your Accounts until you get a green check mark next to the Account label.

Step 7: When you get to the Primary Contact field, select the lookup icon. Here you can change the look up field. In this example will use the Contact name.

This is where you could use the unique id. This would allow you to map the contact to the correct account if you have duplicate records.

Step 8: Complete the same steps for the contacts. Once again you could change the lookup field but we will leave this as the Account name.

Note if you do want to use a unique id, you would need to map the unique field to the parent customer. Then select the id field from the account entity that you populated in the above step.

Step 9: The summary screen appears select Next and the Submit to start the import process.

Step 10: You can review the import process by browsing to the Workplace, then Imports.

From there you can look at what did import successfully, the partial failures and the failures may have occurred.

Here is an example error message that you could receive if you have duplicated accounts.

Hope this helps. Remember, you can always call in a dedicated Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner if you find your import too complex to do on your own.

Happy CRM’ing!

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Joe D365

Joe D365 is a Microsoft Dynamics 365 superhero who runs on pure Dynamics adrenaline. As the face of PowerObjects, Joe D365’s mission is to reveal innovative ways to use Dynamics 365 and bring the application to more businesses and organizations around the world.